five minutes with Samantha Lena

About 3 years ago, I worked and studied in Madrid with a group of students from Cuse. Amongst these new friends, I met this awesome, quirky and fun-loving girl, Sam! Unfortunately, I couldn't interview her in person since we live on opposite sides of the States. But I am so excited to share with you a little bit about her and showcase some of her amazing photographs!
What camera do you use?
I use a Canon EOS 7D, but for more causal shooting I use a Sony NEX-5R.
What are your favorite things to photograph?
I really love to photograph nature and urban environments, but I also like to set up portraits where I have more control over artistic features.
What are your goals as a student and photographer?
I originally applied to Newhouse (School of Public Communications) at Syracuse for photojournalism, but quickly switched into film. I plan on trying to include photography while I can but not make it my main focus. My goal is to implement some positive changes to mass media while continuing a social justice education.
What do you like to do besides photography?
I really enjoy both skiing and traveling but rarely do so at the same time. I grew up skiing at Mount Snow in Vermont and was a member of the Syracuse Ski Team for two years. Last semester I studied in London where I was able to travel to Turkey, Ireland, Belgium, France and Germany. Spending time abroad has really had an influence on my photography and on my own personal growth. 
What inspires you?
I'm inspired by moments. There are times where I'm driving in my car and I see something out the window and have to pull over to get the picture. I see in pictures. I've always wanted to be behind the camera, even as a kid in my parents home videos I'm asking to be behind the lens. Taking pictures has always been what I do. I think photography is tricky with truth, and truth is something I think is always worth exploring.
See more and follow her work here!!

Weekend Recap

I had a very fruitful weekend. My family came up to Syracuse and we drove to Rochester and had a behind the scenes tour at the Seneca Zoo. We got to pet the rhinos and feed the polar bears and tigers. Then I graduated from Syracuse University in the morning of Mother's Day and spent the afternoon BBQing with my friends and said goodbye... until we meet again :)

Arrived at our next destination: NYC!

The Shift Dance Crew

Photo shoot for our spread in Medley Magazine.
Photos by Elizabeth Reyes. Check out more of her work here.

Unfortunately not everyone from the crew could make it out so only a few of us got to be photographed.
Thank you Shift for making college so rewarding and unforgettable. I had the time of my life laughing, EATING, dancing and messing around with you guys. All those cupcakes we baked for each other, the parties we hosted, the late night Tully's feasts, long hours of exhausting practices, shaking our booties in our hammer pants, messing up on stage, and all those hours we sacrificed just to spend time with a family that shares the love for dance. 

But of course, I couldn't feature Shift and not include everyone...
These photos below are from my amazing friend Jon Shih.

 We've been through so much to get to where we are today.
 Losing our most sassy and bad-ass member of The Shift - Marinna Khon (1988 - 2010). 
We miss you so much and will always remember the way you WORKED on stage.
 Experimenting with LCD lights and making costumes for hours.
 Teaching dance at Relay For Life and walking out of the dome at 6am like zombies.
 Getting ready for Elements of Hip-Hop.
 Opening for Tim Be Told.
Of course our favorite thing to do - eat cupcakes and celebrate birthdays!
Sharing the stage with the b-boys.
 Hosting workshops for Cuse dancers.
I love you guys and will always hold our memories close to my heart! :)


Looking for something to do this weekend in Syracuse?
Diavolo Dance Theater joins Syracuse for a week of Residency and shows off their talents this Friday at the Landmark Theatre.

Transit Space -- Where Dance and Skateboarding culture collide. 
Read more here.